Saturday, March 20, 2010

Everyday Life: Flakes on a plane

You know your flight isn't going well ...

when your husband is sitting half naked in his seat, your moaning two year old sprawled across his lap, dressed only in underwear, baby screaming bloody murder in the other arm.

And you? The mother? Instead of helping your partner wrangle your two barfing, screaming children during the first hour of the flight, you've got your face buried in a flimsy white bag that couldn't have been made for vomit because, hello, who makes a puke bag out of paper?

Oh, and those clothes that your husband and 2.5 year old were wearing? They are nestled snugly inside one of the ten plastic garbage bag under your seat because they are drenched with baby and toddler vomit. And you, the mother? You kind of wish someone would PULease tuck you under a seat so the aircraft would stop spinning.

And that emergency flight attendant button? Yeah, that thing isn't for decoration and you, the mother, liberally tested it by calling the flight attendant who graciously brought you at least 10 garbage bags, hand sanitizer, 50 napkins and enough Ginger Ale and kind words to settle an entire plane load of stomachs all while spritzing air freshener up and down the aisles of the plane so as to keep the other passengers from declaring mutiny and voting your and the other naked barfers off the plane.

And when the plane finally barrels to a screeching stop at the end of the runway and the cabin lights shine? All of the other passengers within a six row radius, stand, turn and look at you with an equal mix of pity, disgust and thankfulness that the flight from hell has ended and they, indeed, were not the victims of any of your family members' barf. Some congratulate you because the flight is over. Others offer a chuckle of mercy and relief while asking "rough flight?" And you, the mother, who spent a flight nursing a sick baby in one arm and holding a puke bag in the other? You want to go all Bobby Knight on the next person who asks if the ride was a little "bumpy."

The highlight of the flight? At least you, the mother, managed to get all your barf into a bag instead of square on your husband's face and shirt and pants ala the kids. That, potentially, could have killed any sweltering romance that watching two baby births hasn't already knocked out of the park.

Thank God for husbands with iron stomachs, air freshener, no turbulence on an internally bumpy flight, carry-on suitcases that unknowingly house pajamas for a naked toddlers,two baby carriers that can transport two completely passed out, sick kids all the way from the gate to baggage claim to the car and saint-like flight attendants who sweetly bid you farewell by saying "Don't worry; it happens. See you next flight."

"Thanks. God bless you," you, the mother, say out loud. "See you next flight."

And then, you, the mother, mumble under your breath, "In about 10 years when the kids can fend for themselves and aim puke into a bag or when pigs can fly."

That would at least put your mess to shame.

P.S. If you are traveling with children and can choose to take a Southwest Airlines flight, ohmygosh, do it. You won't be sorry. The customer service is awesome. Even when you're barfing. (And just for note, we bought our plane tickets, and I'm not being paid to say this. The company just rocks; we've had nothing but good experiences on all 12 of our flights, and onmygoodness do you need good experiences when you fly with kids!)


  1. You poor thing!! When you're feeling back to normal we'll have to get together...

    can't remember my google password... you know how to find me. :)

  2. Oh Hyacynth... I am so sorry! But welcome home :)

  3. WOW! I cannot even imagine how incredibly awful that flight was for all of you! Thank goodness it's over and you're home!

    I agree about Southwest. The kids and I are flying to Tampa for Easter and we always take SW. It's a straight flight and very affordable. The only thing I don't like is the open seating.

  4. Oh goodness! I'm so sorry.

    On the up side, I bet you weren't too worried about "flying."

    Call me when you're feeling up to it.

  5. OH MY GOD!!!!!!! Hyacynth! It's a bloody miracle you didn't fall apart in a mess of tears and puke. I cannot imagine how terrible that must have been. But by the Grace of God and good aim on your part, you made it. Did i read correctly that the flight was NOT turbulent but you three somehow managed to be? Oh dear.
    When our little guy was under 2, he had very bad motion sickness due to the fact that he barely ever travelled more than a kilometer in a car (ahh...village living!). With the exception of Gravol, we had these tiny little motion sickness wristbands for him, which seemed to help. They put pressure on a certain nerve to help stop whatever nerve wants to vomit. Get em' next time at your local pharmacy!

    And I gotta say, way to go on the shout-out for Southwest Airlines Hyacynth. We are so quick to complain and lay blame when things go wrong. It's so nice to see you taking the time, even after your nasty journey home, to commend them on their good service. I, for one, will seek them out in the future thanks to your recommendation.

  6. Oh no! I'm sorry to hear that. I'm glad that you're safely home now. I haven't been on a plane with the kids in ages. I really don't look forward to the idea. Enjoy your Sunday Hyacynth! You deserve some relaxation.

  7. OMGosh, so sorry you're sick! What an awful way to fly. Hooray for good customer service! Hard to find, and I'm glad to know that it's still out there! :)
    Hope that you're all feeling better very soon. Welcome home!

  8. Oh my word. You poor thing. I'm glad that flight is behind you and hopefully will NEVER be repeated. I can't even begin to imagine your misery.

  9. Wow!! I cannot even imagine, I would have been a puddle of tears at the end of that! I bet you are glad to be home!!

  10. Oh my word, I would have been under the seat! You are one strong lady!

  11. @Heather M., would love to get together! And I do, indeed, know how to find you. And find you I will when I'm ready to escape!

    @Corinne, thank you for that welcome home. It was my first one since landing. :)

    @USNchic -- I sincerely hope you have a wonderful flying experience with the kids, but be comforted that if you have one like mine, at least you'll be flying Southwest with the saint-like flight attendants!

    @Rose, you are very right. You know me so well. I didn't have time to be overly panicked about the actual flying because barfing took precedence.

    @SwedishJenn, Oh, your poor little one!! I'm sure he did get motion sickness having never really been in the car. And the village living -- oh! oh! SIGN ME UP! Don't like cars or planes or really anything except for horses and buggies and maybe an occasional train ride. (But NOT the El in Chicago!)
    And I really don't know why we all got sick. We never have had motion sickness before. Very strange.

    @Septemeber Mom, @Nicole, @Tara, @Foursons, @Melissa, Thank you for your kind words. I assure you your comisseration greatly helps my poor, damaged mommy ego. You know, mommys are supposed to be able to hold it together and be strong. It helps to know that other moms think it really was as bad as it really was. If that makes sense. :) Love you ladies!

  12. Seriously? Wow. Were you sick before you got on the plane (I ask only because I've been on a flight where someone was denied boarding who had thrown up in the airport)? Thank GOD we weren't on your flight, as neither Mister Man nor I have an iron constitution when it comes to puke. We are both sympathy pukers :) Fingers crossed all is well now!

  13. That's an awesome post. Not that I'm not sympathetic or anything, but I laughed out loud at the imagery. Thank you.

  14. Gracious!! What a travel nightmare! But you know what they say...when life hands you barfing kids at 10,000 feet, blog about it! Which you've done, of course, in the most entertaining fashion.
    p.s. Thanks for your visit to my blog. Nice to *meet* you.

  15. @Michelle, Yes, thank God you two weren't there or else there would not have been enough air freshener for all of the smell coverage needed!

    @RynRose, Can I just say I'm so glad you laughed; makes something not so fun seem so much better. Plus, I'm not feeling all woe is me about this. More like, can you believe that I was THAT lady with THOSE kids? lol

    @Jo, so happy to meet you, too. You know, I think I'd be a lot more bitter about life if these things happened to me and I didn't have a blog in which to tell all. Ahhh, sweet, cheap therapy.

  16. Oh my gosh, you poor thing. Was it a motion sickness thing? Or were the three of you stricken with something?

    Needless to say, welcome home and I'm with you on not liking planes or cars or things that go vrmmmm. Give me a bicyle and I'm set. Feel much safer that way!

  17. @Mrs. Cline, I think it was food poisoning from the dinner we ate at the airport. Blech! I'll never eat at that particular chain again. And should we start our own bicycle community?? That's one thing I love about Sanibel Island in Florida -- everyone bikes everywhere and cars get fined if they don't stop for bikers and pedestrians at crosswalks. Love it!


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